Romelu Lukaku joined Chelsea in August 2011 and initially had a tough life in the Premier League with a frustrating first season at the newly crowned Europa League champions.
However, since his loan move to West Brom, the Belgian has shown that he can be a star for Chelsea next season.
Lukaku arrived at the Blues from Anderlecht for a fee of around £20 million and as a result there was high expectation on the 20 year old's shoulders. In his first season at Chelsea the Belgian striker made only 12 appearances and provided only one assist the entire season.
Lukaku played mostly in the reserves and even when Chelsea won the Champions League in May 2012 the youngster did not take any joy in the victory due to his limited opportunities at the club.
Lukaku then joined West Brom last summer and his career in the Premier League finally took off. The Belgian striker has scored 17 goals and provided four assists in 38 appearances for the Midlands club, many appearances coming off the bench. For a 20 year old this is amazing. Lukaku helped West Brom to an eight placed finish, one of the highest finishes for the club in a number of years.
He has also proved he can perform in the big games, he scored a hat-trick on the last day of the season against Manchester United and came on as a sub against Liverpool at Anfield where he also scored.
Lukaku is likened to Chelsea's former star striker Didier Drogba. He is very good in the air and very strong, and has searing pace. Ironically the Belgian star has even said that Drogba is one of his idols and one of his main reasons for joining Chelsea in the first place. With the imminent arrival of Jose Mourinho to Chelsea, the Portuguese manager may be looking for a "new Drogba" and in Lukaku the London club already have a ready made one.
With all of Chelsea's strikers misfiring this season a chance must be given to Lukaku. Fernando Torres only scored eight Premier League goals this season and since his arrival from Newcastle, Dembe Ba has only managed two goals in the league for Chelsea. Chelsea are also rumoured to be in the market for strikers such as Edinson Cavani and Radamael Falcao, however both these strikers could cost upwards of £50 million and in Romelu Lukaku Chelsea already have a young Premier League proven striker, unlike the players targeted who have never played in England.
The Belgian could save the Chelsea owners money which could be invested in other areas of the squad, such as the need for a new centre back, should John Terry retire in the near future.
It remains to be seen whether Lukaku will in fact be at Chelsea next season. The player himself has even said that he expects to be loaned out with talk of a new striker joining the club. This would be foolish for Chelsea and detrimental for Lukaku's future at the club.
Upon his return from his second loan spell Lukaku may find it difficult to break through into the first team due to the presence of the new striker. In this case it would not be surprising if Lukaku then asks for a transfer. If the striker left it would be a huge loss to Chelsea, therefore the club should give the player a chance next season before it is too late.
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